Popular festival reaches new heights

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 29 December, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 29 December, 1999, 12:00am

The sky was the limit for participants in a colourful festival at the Sports Institute in Sha Tin.

Some 3,500 people gathered for the International Kite Flying Festival organised by the Provisional Regional Council as part of the programme of millennium celebrations.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, council vice-chairman Tony Kan said the festival, which was launched 12 years ago, was becoming increasingly popular.

'This year, apart from local participants, we have teams from Beijing, Xian and Yangjiang from the mainland, and kite flyers from Taiwan, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines and Singapore,' Mr Kan said.

'The competition attracts kites with different cultural characteristics, and enables participants to exchange ideas and kite-flying skills. The traditional kites of foreign contestants are an eye-opener for us.' Apart from the international competition, local masters were invited to demonstrate their kite- flying techniques. Participants were provided free kites so they could try their hand at a 'unique experience' with guidance from instructors.

There was also an exhibition featuring special kites in the shape of dragons, eagles, butterflies and dragonflies, as well as the winning entries of a kite- making competition held earlier this month.